Ulagalantha Perumal Temple, Kanchipuram – Festivals & Religious Practices
The temple priests perform the pooja (rituals) during festivals and on a daily basis. As at other Vishnu temples of Tamil Nadu, the priests belong to the Vaishnavaite community, one of Brahmin sub-caste. The temple rituals are performed six times a day: Ushathkalam at 7 a.m., Kalasanthi at 8:00 a.m., Uchikalam at 12:00 p.m., Sayarakshai at 6:00 p.m., Irandamkalam at 7:00 p.m. and Ardha Jamam at 10:00 p.m.
Each ritual has three steps: Alangaram (decoration), neivethanam (food offering) and deepa aradanai (waving of lamps) for both Ulagalantha Perumal and Amuthavalli. During the last step of worship, nagaswaram (pipe instrument) & tavil (percussion instrument) are played, religious instructions in the Vedas (sacred text) are recited by priests, and worshippers prostrate themselves in front of the temple mast.
There are weekly, monthly and fortnightly rituals performed in the temple. There are two major festivals celebrated in the temple - Brahmotsavam during the Tamil month of Thai (January - February) and Vamana Jayanthi during the Tamil month of Avani (August - September) on Sravanam star. Vaikunda Ekadasi is grandly celebrated in the temple in Tamil Margazhi covering December-January. Onam Festival. Navarathri, Kaarthigai, Panguni Utsavam are the other festivals celebrated with much fanfare.